It’s Really No Surprise That Britain Is The Country That Eats The Most Baked Beans

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From 1941 onwards, the U.K. government introduced a nationwide food rationing program. In addition to food coupons, people were given a pink ration book that allowed them to exchange “points” for specific goods. One of the first items included in this point-based rationing system was “tinned beans.” This highlights just how important beans were during that time. Baked beans played a crucial role in helping the British population cope with meat shortages by providing an alternative source of protein.

The widespread availability of canning factories made it easier to produce and distribute baked beans as convenient and emergency-ready food. So, from 1941 to 1948, baked beans were classified as an “essential food” by the Ministry of Food. Even after rationing ended and (arguably) tastier alternatives became available again, baked beans had become such a staple in the British diet that they remained popular.

Today, baked beans are widely sold and consumed throughout the country. Grocery stores stock them in pallets to make restocking easier since people buy them at a blistering pace. Interestingly, baked beans weren’t just popular among common folks, but they were also favored by the Royal Family. Princess Diana’s favorite breakfast food was a can of baked beans, the Duchess of Cornwall enjoys beans on toast, and Heinz, the most popular brand of baked beans, has held a Royal Warrant (a certificate issued to companies that supply goods to the Royal Court) since 1951.

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